Jan 14, 2020 1:03 PM

Tax exemption for military retirees wins initial approval

Posted Jan 14, 2020 1:03 PM

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - Military retirees in Nebraska will get to keep more of their retirement benefits under a bill that won first-round approval from lawmakers on Monday.

The bill would exempt half of a military retiree's benefit from Nebraska state taxes, a key priority for Gov. Pete Ricketts. The measure advanced, 46-0, through the first of three required votes.

Sen. Tom Brewer, who sponsored the bill, said the measure would help Nebraska attract and retain military service members after they retire. Several neighboring states, including Iowa and Missouri, don't impose any tax on military retirement benefits and both states have managed to entice retirees from Nebraska's Offutt Air Force Base.

Brewer, a U.S. Army veteran from Gordon, introduced the bill last year but lawmakers ran out of time before they were able to debate it in 2019.

The bill would cost the state an estimated $12.6 million in lost revenue by fiscal year 2022, according to the Legislative Fiscal Office.

Continue Reading Panhandle Post
Jan 14, 2020 1:03 PM
City of Alliance continues to move forward on 'Pillars For The Park' design

Alliance – At the January 7, 2020 Alliance City Council meeting, resolutions approving additional steps toward the completion of the Pillars in the Park project were approved. 

The Alliance City Council accepted the funds raised to date for the completion of the project. The funds turned over to the City totaled $231,038.79, in which were raised through community donations and fundraising activities.  In addition, Council approved moving forward with hiring a consultant to assist with the development and submission of a grant to aide with construction costs.

The City of Alliance continues to move forward with design, planning and engineering. 

Baker and Associates of Scottsbluff conducted public meetings to gather input from the community regarding preferences for the project.  Based on that input several design options were created and shared with the community through an on-line survey. These survey results are being used to create a final design that will allow construction documents to be developed. 

Once construction documents are created, the City will know the expected total cost of the pillars construction and sunken garden renovation. 

If the City successfully secures construction grant funding and donations continue to come in as expected, the combined total funds should be near to what is needed to complete construction. 

Future donations for the Pillars Project need to be submitted to the City of Alliance at 324 Laramie Ave and will be designated for use on this project. 

 The City of Alliance would like to thank the Pillars in the Park group for their tireless efforts to work with the community to raise funds for the completion of this project. 

The City would also like to thank the Alliance Park Foundation for their efforts in tracking donations throughout this two-year project.

Finally, the City is thankful for the overwhelming dedication of our community to this project because without it, this project would not be possible. 

The City is dedicated to continuing to work with the community to see this project through to completion.